Wednesday, December 2
Shadow

Tag: authoritarianism

Sleepwalking Through Gilead

Sleepwalking Through Gilead

Uncategorized
After finishing both Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale several months ago and, only a couple of days ago, its sequel The Testaments, it occurs to me that many – I am sorely tempted to overgeneralize and say “all” – progressives are too selective in their outrage about the degradation and violence practiced against women in the purely fictitious world of Atwood’s Gilead. I say “selective” because, whereas the nation of Gilead is a product of Atwood’s fertile and dystopia-prone imagination, there are real-life Gileads in the actual world, a real world where women really are degraded, where women are real objects of violence and patriarchally founded oppression. Yet these real-life Gileads seem strangely immune from the kind of outrage directed by progressives against the purely fict...
God As Trump … And Vice Versa — Part 1

God As Trump … And Vice Versa — Part 1

Archetypes, autonomy, awareness, bigotry, Change, Christianity, Church, citizenship, civics, conservatism, Consitution, critical judgment, culture, Discernment, doubt, election year, Enlightenment, Evangelicalism, Fascism, First Amendment, Fundamentalism, God, Human Condition, humor, Ideology, image of God, Isaiah, monotheism, Myth, Mythology, Nihilism, Presidency, progressive politics, Rationality, Religion, Secularity, theocracy, Theology, Trump, Uncategorized
It occurs to me that, despite the time and effort I have expended over the years of writing this column ranting against monotheistic religion, I have never actually published anything summarizing in a single column my objections to monotheism, and why monotheistic religion is fundamentally incompatible with any classically liberal, constitutional, Enlightenment-founded, latitudinarian, pluralistic, rights-centric socio-political order. Now, by the term “monotheistic religion” I understand any system of religious belief which (a) envisions the world as the product of the creative activity of a single Deity Who is (b) possessed of a strong moral bias in favor of certain kinds of conduct and against certain other kinds, and Who (c) is willing to intervene in human history to enforce th...
Good Mourning America!

Good Mourning America!

14th Amendment, 9-11, awareness, bigotry, citizenship, civics, conflict, conservatism, Consitution, critical judgment, culture, election year, First Amendment, hate, Ideology, injustice, Islam, Minorities, Paris attacks, peace and justice, Pentagon, political rhetoric, Politics, Presidency, progressive politics, republic, social justice, Supreme Court, terrorism, Trump, Uncategorized, war
I cannot vouch for the source, but Mark Twain is reputed to have once remarked “History doesn’t repeat, but it sometimes rhymes”.  For reasons of both personal history and temperament, I have always found it difficult to be optimistic. But in the wake – an apt word, if ever there was one! – of the recent presidential election, I find it flatly impossible, and even trying to be such would grate on my sensibilities as an exercise in dishonesty.  The most I can do at this point is to offer some perspective. But even this, modest as it is, may turn out to be considerably less than comforting and encouraging. For the precedent I am going to cite, the most relevant template, will be the final death throes of the Weimar Republic and the rise of fascism in Germany, as embodied in Adolf Hitler....